There are about 3.4 million people of Filipino descent in the United States which comprises 1.1 % of the U.S. population. The Filipino-American group is the country’s second largest self-reported Asian ancestry after Chinese-Americans.
Filipinos in North America were first documented in the 16th century, with small settlements beginning in the 18th century. Mass migration to the US began in the early 20th Century when the Philippines was ceded by Spain to the U.S. in 1898 under the Treaty of Paris. Philippine independence was recognized by the United States on July 4, 1946.
July 4 was observed in the Philippines as Independence Day until August 4,1964 when President Diosdado Macapagal signed into law Republic Act No. 4166 designating June 12 as the country’s Independence Day upon the advice of historians and the urging of nationalists. June 12 had previously been observed as Flag Day.
Immigration reform of the 60’s saw an exodus of Filipinos to the U.S. attracted by “the American Dream and the opportunities that await them”. Significant populations of Filipino Americans can be found in California, Hawaii, Greater New York, Illinois and Texas.
It has been generations ago when the Exodus to the “Promised Land” took place. Has there been a significant change of perspectives about the U.S.?
Filipinos responding to a survey show more positive views on the US, Americans, and US Presidents better than Americans themselves.
Culled from data from the Pew Research Center’s Global Attitudes Project , where surveys are conducted by telephone or face-to-face and where national surveys are representative of the entire population of a given country), the research showed that “the Filipinos like the US a lot” with 85% of those polled having a more “favorable view of the American people”.
Americans surveyed came second at 84% saying they have a “favorable view of themselves”.
Overall, the Philippines had the most “favorable “view of the US followed by Israel and Ghana. Americans did not figure in the top 3 countries with a “favorable” view of the US.
The data has been sourced from the 2013 incarnation of the Global Attitudes Project on “attitudes towards the US” conducted by the Pew Global Attitude Survey which was launched in 2002.
The survey question went: “Please tell if you have a very favorable, somewhat favorable, somewhat unfavorable or very unfavorable opinion of Americans.”
The Project has also conducted a series of worldwide public opinion surveys that encompasses a broad array of subjects which include people’s assessments of their own lives to their views about the current state of the world and important issues of the day.
Most Filipinos who participated in the survey “seemed to think the US puts a premium on the interest of the Philippines when it comes to international policy”. Filipinos described the US’ consideration of the Philippine interest to be a “great deal/fair amount” with around 85% of them in agreement.
On the way things are going in the Philippines, the same Philippine respondents admitted than the US had a “great deal/fair amount of influence”. Of those surveyed, 84% “had confidence in President Barack Obama as well as with former US President George W. Bush.
The Americans, however, had a different view with “only 57% of Americans surveyed said they had confidence in their own president”. The Philippines followed Germany in expressing “the most confidence in US leadership”. France, Kenya and Canada are in the group confident of US leadership also.
The Philippines was included among the Top 3 countries that expressed the highest approval of Obama’s international policies at 76% with Germany and France answering “approve” at 88% and 81%, respectively.
Moreover, the Filipinos surveyed are confident that “China will never replace the US as the world’s leading power at 74%. Japan, at 72% is also confident that “China will not be able to take over US. The Philippines and Japan look to the US as an ally in territorial disputes with China.
It did not come as a surprise that 81% of the Filipinos surveyed view US as a “partner” of the Philippines. The Filipinos only showed disapproval over the US’ use of drones “to target extremists in countries like Pakistan, Yemen and Somalia” with 52% of the respondent against it.
“Over 325,000 interviews in 60 countries have been conducted” to create the Global Attitudes database” according to the Pew Research.
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